Arizona is known for a variety of different things, including being one of the most gorgeous states to spend time outside during the fall and winter months. National Hiking Day is on November 17 and the Grand Canyon State has no shortage of trails that Arizonans can visit to celebrate.
Hiking has always been a popular activity in the state, but recently saw explosive growth in 2020, in part due to COVID-19 restrictions pausing many social outings that people did together.
According to RunRepeat.com, the number of hikes logged in 2020 was up 171.4% compared to 2019, while the number of individual hikers increased by 134.7%.
On November 17, and over the next few months as the temperatures continue to cool down, there are a variety of ways to elevate your hikes. An easy upgrade for groups of family and friends is to download WishTrip, a leading adventure recording app that allows anyone to create beautiful albums to make every adventure memorable. Every album includes a map, photo album and video of every adventure. WishTrip recently launched free interactive games for visitors to Phoenix’s Papago Park to play. The app is also planning on launching similar games in New York and Los Angeles within the next few weeks.
The WishTrip games cover all age groups from children to adults and combine the fun of hiking Papago Park along with conquering unique challenges that teach users about the Sonoran Desert and Arizona history during their hike. Some Phoenix natives even reported discovering parts of Papago that they hadn’t been to before as a result of the WishTrip Games.
If Papago Park is not a trail of preference, then creating trails on your own can be just as fun. Use WishTrip to geotag your path and points of interest so you can recreate your adventure and others can follow.
Another way to make the hiking experience more engaging is to try photography on the trail. Taking photos along the journey will slow down the hike and allow more relaxation while also forcing you to take in the beauty of your surroundings. You can also snap images of cool animals, plants and other elements of nature that you might not see every day. Taking a lot of pictures might seem cumbersome in the moment but you will be happy to have the memories later.
While it might seem counter-intuitive to be using technology when you want to go out and enjoy nature, research shows that technology can help us enjoy nature more and even get us out hiking more. A survey conducted by gadgets and technology e-tailer, LaptopsDirect.co.uk, found that 33% of people say that gadgets connect them to the environment in a more immersive and memorable way; 72% say gadgets inspire them to explore the outdoors more and 40% say wildlife tech enhances the time they spend in nature.
There are many fun ways to celebrate National Hiking Day and experience the world’s natural beauty through the great outdoors and majestic views that trails can provide. Whether it’s just getting in a good exercise by yourself, gathering a group of friends together or trying to conquer WishTrip’s games at Papago park, there’s an activity for everyone to turn their hike into one that they’ll always remember.
Bezalel Lenzizky is CEO of WishTrip. WishTrip is a SaaS-based tourism experience management platform that enables tourist destinations to play a more active role in shaping visitors’ travel experiences. WishTrip helps destinations learn more about their visitors, personalize their experiences and improve their online reputations. For visitors, WishTrip is a smartphone application that helps travellers seamlessly navigate customer sites, find information, and record their memories. For more info visit: wishtrip.com/papago-park-games. The business division of WishTrip, WishTrip Enterprise, recently launch a self-signup version of their platform, which gives parks & heritage sites, zoos & aquariums, municipalities and tourism boards, and theme parks the ability to create their own site and games, free of charge until March 31, 2022.